The 2010 Beat the Bridge 8K

Posted on May 20, 2010


On Sunday, May 16th, I ran in the 28th Annual Nordstrom JDRF Beat the Bridge 8K. You can see a course map here.

I got there about two hours before the race was scheduled to start, which meant that I easily beat traffic and was able to park at the stadium. Having learned my lesson from previous races at Husky Stadium, I parked near the exit for an easier getaway after the race.

The event was packed, as usual. When you get that many people together in the Seattle area, I’m bound to know some people. I ran into some former co-workers and got caught up on gossip.

The event raised over $800,000 for juvenile diabetes research.

One thing that struck me about the race this year is how much I enjoy it. I had a bit of a nervous stomach the morning of the race, but as soon as I was in among the other participants I calmed right down. I just felt euphoric. Anticipation may be tough, but once I’m in the moment, I’m very stable and calm.

I placed #3503 overall, 157 of 211 of my division (male, over 40; and I’m disappointed there weren’t more of us), and 1859 of 2454 for my gender. My gun time was 59:59, and my personal time was 50:36 for a pace of 10:11/mile. Yes, I did Beat the Bridge. Therein I draw some important lessons.

First, I purposely registered for the second wave, even though I’m not fast enough to run in it. Last year, the way the race was organized, there was no way to beat the bridge if you started in the third wave. Put another way, if you could have beaten the bridge, you ran fast enough to be in the second wave, at least. This year they reorganized the race start, and I easily beat the bridge. I really liked the way they staggered the starts within waves. It helped open up the course more quickly.

Second, I need to pace myself better. I ran the first two miles in under 9 minutes each. I missed the third mile marker (just like last year). By the time I got to the fourth, I was alternating running and walking. I think if I had slowed down the beginning, I still could have beaten the bridge this year AND I would have had more left for the end.

In my defense: Last year I ran onto the bridge just as they stopped everyone for the bridge going up. It really stomped on my morale for the rest of the race. So this year I was completely focused on those first two miles and beating the bridge. I burned myself out.

The police and volunteer support was terrific. Having police officers on hand to direct traffic after the race was a god-send, really. The drive home was easy, and by the time the rain started I was napping on my couch.

So there’s my race report.

Posted in: running